1977: Movies Sorted By Tier

Tags: 
  • Loved

  • Annie Hall

    ... Dammit. I loved this enough now, and Manhattan enough a couple months ago, that now I have to wonder if I should revisit all those other Woody Allen movies that left me cold. I think Manhattan does relationships a bit better, but this one rings the bell pretty regularly too, and this is the first Woody Allen movie to not only make me laugh out loud, but to light me up more than once. I read that this movie serves as a best-of-both-worlds film, combining his earlier bizarre and at-times slapsticky humor with his later works of greater characterization. Sounds pretty good to me, and I'd like to think I would have observed that myself if I hadn't stumbled upon the review. Ah well, next time I'll just lie and plagarize.
  • Star Wars

    ... The more Lucas pisses me off the harder it is not to demote this. Still no reservations about Empire though.
  • Really Liked

  • Close Encounters of the Third Kind

  • The Duellists

    ... Napoleonic officer Harvey Keitel gets it in his head that fellow officer Keith Carradine has offended his perverse sense of honor, and the two engage in a years-long series of duels, ranging across different fronts of the war and different weapons. Like Ridley Scott's subsequent two masterpieces, emotion is spare and the action is driven by situation and great cinematography. The duellists themselves are enigmatic almost to the point of inpenetrability, so I really don't know how Scott managed to keep me engrossed, but he did. It's a fine line he treads between human and robotic (making his doing Bladerunner oh-so-appropriate), so it's no wonder he started falling off it more later in his career.
  • Sorcerer

    ... How is it that William Friedkin does these three movies in a row: The French Connection, The Exorcist, and Sorcerer, and everybody has heard of the first two but nobody (including myself, until recently) has heard of the third? You've got a great director at the top of his game, Roy Scheider following up The French Connection (Oscar-nominated), Jaws, and Marathon Man, and a screenplay by Walon Green (The Wild Bunch). Filmed on location all over the place. A unbelievable trucks-over-a-rope-bridge stunt. And it's *good*. While perhaps not as groundbreaking (?) or overtly philosophical as Wages of Fear, it's just as suspenseful (if not more so), well-acted, and dark. I'm baffled as to it's disappearance from cinematic consciousness. Is it because it's a remake? Because it has an incongruous title? I dunno. I'm open to the possibility that I was alone in my ignorance of this movie, but that seems unlikely.
  • Glad I Saw

  • None Yet
  • Guilty Pleasures

  • Damnation Alley

  • The Kentucky Fried Movie

  • Orca

  • Smokey and the Bandit

  • Could Have Missed

  • Slapshot

    ... An on-the-way-out hockey team finds new life by brawling their way through games. Quirky characters abound. The finale goes a good way toward redeeming this movie, but for me the rest of it was too dated to be enjoyable. Newman's trademark antihero character wears thin here. I'm glad I watched it, but I can't go so far as to recommend it.
  • Unranked

  • Exorcist II: The Heretic

  • The Rescuers

  • Saturday Night Fever

  • The Spy Who Loved Me

  • Should Have Missed

  • None Yet
  • El Sucko Grande

  • None Yet

Ah, so glad you liked Annie Hall! I enjoy reading your ongoing thoughts about Woody Allen appreciation. I'm not sure if you've posted this before, but do the other Woody Allen movies you've watched tend to be pre-Annie-Hall or post-Annie-Hall? If the former, then I can understand your plight, for the humor in such movies as Bananas, Sleeper, and Love and Death, though it appealed to me, is certainly not for everyone.

If the latter, then I'm less sure what to tell you (unless we're talking about post-Annie-Hall meaning movies like Small Time Crooks, in which case I can empathize with your distaste). But anytime you're up for some more Woody, I think I feel pretty safe recommending Hannah and Her Sisters to you, if you haven't seen it (and hey, lbangs and stooky like it too)! You might like Crimes and Misdemeanors as well, but be warned: despite a few moments of dry humor, that movie is definitely not a comedy. It's a pretty serious psychological drama.

Thanks AJ! Here's what I've definitely seen:

Small Time Crooks (2000)
Deconstructing Harry (1997)
Mighty Aphrodite (1995)
Bullets Over Broadway (1994)
Manhattan Murder Mystery (1993)
Manhattan (1979)
Annie Hall (1977)
Sleeper (1973)
Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex * But Were Afraid to Ask (1972)
Take the Money and Run (1969)

... and I think I've seen these, but they probably warrant a rewatch:

Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989)
Hannah and Her Sisters (1986)
Midsummer Night's Sex Comedy, A (1982)

I just queued Hannah. If that goes well I'll try Crimes again.

It's strange that Sorcerer, Gus van Sant's Psycho, Diabloqiue are pretty close to shot-for-shot remakes of the B&W originals, but only Sorcerer really works (imo).

I don't recall Sorcerer being anything close to a shot-for-shot remake. It adheres very closely to the plot of the original though. Am I remembering incorrectly?

I haven't seen Sharon Stone's Diabolique or Van Sant's Psycho, so I don't know how close they are to the originals, although I understand Psycho is literally a shot-for-shot remake.

Anyway, if my memory is correct, perhaps that's why Sorcerer is the one that works - it's not shot-for-shot.

Diabolique isn't quite shot-fot-shot remake, either. I came away with the impression that Sorcerer was often shot-fot-shot because I'd seen Sorcerer (without knowing what I was watching) about 4 months ago, then recently watched The Wages of Fear. I had to stop it and skip around to different parts to see if I was watching the same movie. At every point, I could've sworn it was the same movie. But then I remembered that the film I'd watched before was in color, so they had to be different films.

I guess there's no real logic to what makes a remake succeed or fail - there are too many factors at work.